NanoRacks-Riverside Christian High School-E. Coli Bacteria Growth with UV Exposure in Microgravity (NanoRacks-RCHS-E. Coli Growth with UV Exposure) - 11.22.16

Overview | Description | Applications | Operations | Results | Publications | Imagery

ISS Science for Everyone

Science Objectives for Everyone
Bacteria have been shown to grow faster and more virulent in microgravity as compared to their growth on Earth. Understanding how and why this happens is important for safeguarding crew health on current and future long-duration space missions. NanoRacks-Riverside Christian High School-E. Coli Bacteria Growth with UV Exposure in Microgravity (NanoRacks-RCHS-E. Coli Growth with UV Exposure) studies a modified form of  Escherichia coli (E. coli) bacteria that are exposed to ultraviolet radiation, determining whether they exhibit the same life and death cycle in microgravity as they do on Earth.
Science Results for Everyone
Information Pending

The following content was provided by Tamerisa Dyer, B.S., and is maintained in a database by the ISS Program Science Office.
Experiment Details

OpNom: NanoRacks Module-21 S/N 1002

Principal Investigator(s)
Riverside Christian High School , Riverside Christian High School, Riverside, CA, United States

Co-Investigator(s)/Collaborator(s)
Tamerisa Dyer, B.S., Riverside Christian Academy, Riverside, CA, United States
Angela Mooney, B.S., Riverside Christian High School, Riverside, CA, United States
William LeFevre, B.S., Riverside Christian High School, Riverside, CA, United States

Developer(s)
Riverside Christian High School, Riverside, CA, United States
Valley Christian High School , San Jose , CA, United States
NanoRacks LLC, Webster, TX, United States

Sponsoring Space Agency
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)

Sponsoring Organization
National Laboratory Education (NLE)

Research Benefits
Space Exploration, Earth Benefits, Scientific Discovery

ISS Expedition Duration
March 2014 - September 2014

Expeditions Assigned
39/40

Previous Missions
Information Pending

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Experiment Description

Research Overview

  • NanoRacks-Riverside Christian High School-E. Coli Bacteria Growth with UV Exposure in Microgravity (NanoRacks-RCHS-E. Coli Growth with UV Exposure) determines the life and death curve of transformed Escherichia coli (E. coli) bacteria in a microgravity situation when it has been subjected to Ultraviolet (UV) light exposure.
  • The benefit of studying the life and death of transformed bacteria comes from the increased use of biotechnology. Bacteria are used more often to produce useful products for human consumption or to do jobs such as decomposition for human benefit.
  • UV light exposure is a viable option for killing bacteria in facilities like hospitals where sterile environments is necessary. If this technology works as effectively in a microgravity environment it may lead to the development of effective technology that would reduce the need for antibiotics and other antimicrobial substances.

Description
NanoRacks-Riverside Christian High School-E. Coli Bacteria Growth with UV Exposure in Microgravity (NanoRacks-RCHS-E. Coli Growth with UV Exposure) determines the life and death curve of transformed Escherichia coli (E. coli) bacteria in a microgravity situation when it has been subjected to Ultraviolet (UV) light exposure. Nutrient broth is stored in a small unpressurized sealed polyvinyl chloride (PVC) bag, and a miniature peristaltic pump (RP-Q1 from Tagasago Electric Japan) is used to deliver the nutrient to freeze dried E. coli bacteria located in small unpressurized sealed PVC bag that serves as the growth chamber. Once the pump finishes pumping the nutrient broth it is shut off. Once an hour white light emitting diodes are turned on to illuminate the growth chamber and photos are taken to record the bacteria growth. After 24 hours of bacteria growth the module microcontroller turns on UV light emitting diodes for 5 minutes to expose the growing bacteria and then turns off. Photos are taken every hour to record the death of the bacteria. After an additional 24 hours, the bacteria are assumed to be completed killed and the experiment is turned off.

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Applications

Space Applications
Crews on future long-duration space missions will be at risk of infection, especially if certain types of microbes are stronger in space than they are on Earth. On Earth, UV light is used to sterilize hospital equipment, water and other areas where bacteria can grow. This investigation studies whether ultraviolet light can also counteract bacteria in microgravity, leading to new disinfecting technology that would reduce the need for antibiotics and antimicrobial products on space missions.

Earth Applications
E. coli bacteria are found in the intestines of most warm-blooded animals, including humans, cattle and more. This investigation uses a form that has been modified for scientific study. Results could lead to better design and production methods for genetically modified microbes, which could provide useful products for humans or be used to decompose waste. In addition, students in grades 9 through 12 designed and built the investigation, gaining knowledge and experience in science, engineering and applied math.

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Operations

Operational Requirements and Protocols
NanoRacks Module-21 is completely autonomous completely autonomous and only requires installation and removal.
Crew interaction with NanoRacks Module-21 is limited to transferring the NanoRacks locker Insert from the launch vehicle to the ISS, installation and activation of the NanoRacks Frames into the EXPRESS Rack Locker, cleaning of the air inlet filter (as necessary) and data retrieval (as needed) during the mission.

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Decadal Survey Recommendations

Information Pending

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Results/More Information

Information Pending

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Related Websites
NanoRacks

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Imagery

image The NanoRacks-Riverside Christian High School-E. Coli Bacteria Growth with UV Exposure in Microgravity (NanoRacks-RCHS-E. Coli Growth with UV Exposure) investigation team. Image courtesy of Riverside Christian High School.
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